NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) – They respond to emergencies in the community and country, in a moment's notice.
Men and women of the National Guard rely on support from their families and employers.
Veterans' service and sacrifices are not being overlooked. Thursday, the city of Nacogdoches celebrates their selfless contributions.
"We came here today to swap stories a little but also to remember what they gave to our country and to thank them for that," said Nacogdoches Mayor Roger Van Horn.
The mayor signed a statement of support from the United States Department of Defense, honoring city employees who are serving or have served.
"Part of the things you did, we saw Tuesday night. The fact that the system still works and we can vote and without fear," said Van Horn during Thursday's ceremony.
It's a personal matter for the mayor -- an army veteran.
"It means more now than it did when you're doing it. I look back on it with terrific pride," said Van Horn.
Navy veteran, Texas National Guardsmen and Nacogdoches police detective Robert Killingsworth says the job requires difficult sacrifices.
"Rita, Katrina and Ike, I was responding to search and rescue efforts along the coast when my family was back here having to deal with the same storm and it's really tough to really leave your family behind but my family is very supportive, they know what I'm doing. I'm out here for the people of Texas," said Killingsworth.
They say having the support of their family and their employers is essential to being able to pick up and leave at any given moment.
"My superiors with the police department and the city don't even hesitate, to say send me a post card a letter, let us know when you are coming back," said Killingsworth.
Little reminders of support that fuels their motivation to serve.
Thursday's celebration at city hall was an early observance of Veterans Day which is next Thursday.
We want you to take a minute to honor any veterans in your family.
Just go to our Facebook page and upload a picture of your men and women of service: http://www.facebook.com/KTREnews
On the photo caption, be sure to include their name, rank, and service branch.
We may just include them in a future newscast.